August 13, 2009, Minneapolis — A third man with Minnesota ties pleaded guilty today in connection with a massive counter-terrorism investigation into the disappearances of 20 Somali-American men. Authorities think the men may have traveled to their native Somalia to fight or train with terrorists. In federal court in Minneapolis today, one of the alleged travelers, Kamal Said Hassan, pleaded guilty of lying to the FBI.
Hassan admitted he told an FBI agent in February that he left the al-Shabaab training camp and went straight to Yemen without committing any further acts on behalf of al-Shabaab. That statement, he said in court today, was false.
In fact, Hassan "continued to work with members of al-Shabaab and follow the orders of al-Shabaab in Somalia," according to a plea agreement filed in court.
Hassan attended Minneapolis Community and Technical College in 2006, according to an MCTC spokesperson. He majored in business management and human services, but did not graduate.
His Facebook profile page lists him as married, Muslim, and a fan of the 1990s TV series "Fresh Prince of Bel-Air." Internet Wall posts from friends provide few clues about the young man who, by his own admission, followed orders from al-Shabaab in Somalia.
He joined Internet groups ranging from "Got My Vans on," referring to the iconic canvas skateboard shoes, to "THE SUFFERING SOMALIS IN MOGADISHO," a web internet page dedicated to the mistreatment of Somalis under the occupation of Ethiopian soldiers beginning in 2006.
According to court documents and friends of the missing Somali-American men, some of the would-be fighters were angered in part by the Ethiopian invasion, which they considered unjust. The young men thought they would be seen as freedom fighters defending a distant homeland.Two other men have also pleaded guilty to terrorism charges. Last month, Salah Osman Ahmed of New Brighton pleaded guilty to providing material support to terrorists. As part of his plea agreement, three other charges were dropped.
Court records made public in July revealed that another man with Twin Cities ties, Abdifatah Isse, pleaded guilty to the same charge and was cooperating with authorities. According to court documents and testimony, Ahmed and Isse said they left for Somalia to fight the Ethiopian invasion. They walked away from al-Shabaab soon after arriving at the camp in December 2007 and eventually made it back to the United States, according to court documents.
Somalia has not had a functioning government since 1991, when warlords overthrew a socialist dictator then turned on each other, causing chaos in the African nation of 7 million. Islamic insurgents Al-Shabaab with ties to Al-Qaida recently intensified their efforts to completely capture the capital city, Mogadishu.
Monday, January 26, 2009, Somalia Al-Shabaab (Al-Qaeda) terrorist website www.kataaib.net is shut down, the Domain Pending Cancellation Per US Government Order on Jan 23 2009. Al-Shabaab (Al-Qaeda linked) terrorist recruiting website www.kataaib.net that has been hosted by the Dotster Web co in Vancouver WA USA since April 13rd 2007 has finally been shut down by a US Government order on Jan 23rd 2009 !
The shut down of the Al-Shabaab website was first reported on Sunday 1/25/2009 at 10:01 pm by private investigator Bill Warner based on a tip from the US Military, see my post here, Sunday, January 25, 2009,
SOMALI AL-SHABAAB TERRORIST RECRUITING WEBSITE HOSTED IN VANCOUVER WA USA, WWW.KATAAIB.NET APPEARS TO BE SHUT DOWN. "Registrant:Domain pending cancelation per government order c/o 8100 NE Parkway Drive, Suite 300 Vancouver, WA 98662 US, phone 360-253-2210" It only took 21 months for the Dotster Web Hosting Co to do the right thing, maybe now the Columbian Newspaper in Vancouver will re-think there stance on protecting the Al-Shabaab website www.kataaib.net "right" to Free Speech, even thought the Al-Shabaab was designated a Terrorist Organization in Feb. of 2008 !